Global Public Health Equity Guiding Principles for Communication

Global Public Health Equity Guiding Principles for Communication

CDC defines health equity as the state in which everyone has a fair and just opportunity to attain their highest level of health. Equitable communication— along with equitable partnerships, science, policy, and practice— is integral to translating scientific data into resources and programs that promote global health equity. Thus, CDC seeks to communicate about global public health using methods and language that are inclusive, respectful, non-stigmatizing, bias-free, and appropriately tailored for the diverse audiences with whom we work and share information. Through deliberate choice of respectful, tailored, and culturally nuanced words, narratives, and visual products, global public health agencies can more effectively advance programmatic and strategic goals while promoting equitable and fair public health practices.

CDC’s Global Public Health Equity Guiding Principles for Communication adds a global perspective to CDC’s Health Equity Guiding Principles for Inclusive Communication. This resource also complements CDC’s Global Health Equity Strategy, which includes guiding principles for implementing health equity and promoting a sustained culture of equity and accountability. This global communication resource is not intended to be prescriptive, exhaustive, or final. Rather, as priorities, language, and cultures continually evolve, this resource will also evolve to continue to provide recommendations and prompt further reflection and discussion.

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CDC encourages global public health professionals to adapt and apply these principles when communicating about their agency’s global public health portfolio. This resource may be particularly useful for prompting reflection among health professionals from high-income countries as they seek to promote global equity and inclusion through communication.


Thank you to each of the reviewers who lent their time and expertise to refine CDC’s Global Public Health Equity Guiding Principles for Communication. In addition to our colleagues across CDC headquarters and country offices, we extend a special thanks to our partners from the World Health Organization, Pan American Health Organization, Women in Global Health, Global Health Technologies Coalition, Taskforce for Global Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Equity Technical Assistance Committee, U.S. National Institute of Health Fogarty International Center, and PATH. We look forward to engaging with more global partners for future updates to this resource.